"The makers of the Constitution conferred the most comprehensive of rights and the right most valued by all civilized men—the right to be let alone." - JUSTICE LOUIS D. BRANDEIS
This week seems to have been the perfect storm of work. Hence the blog neglect. In fact neglect of my "Personal Learning Network" has been pretty much complete. Between meetings and budgets at work, conference travel/presentations and article deadlines, I've been swamped.
I sense that others may be feeling overwhelmed as well. Joyce Valenza worries about not keeping up despite being "hyper-connected." Darren Draper in a column on Twitter says:
I guess my biggest complaint/worry about Twi---r (and every other piece of abused technology out there) is that in our modern and extremely complex world, it’s become far too easy to lose sight of what’s really important in life.
In fact, what I *am* saying is that ALL of these social media tools can be an incredible time suck, and if we don't keep them in check, there's a good chance we'll miss out on many things in life that are simply better than whatever we might get from Twitter (and Facebook, and even bacon).
I guess it is cold comfort to know I am not alone in feeling that one's PLN can feel like a burden as much as a booster at times. I've always appreciated Jeff Utecht's Stages of PLN Adoption. But I wonder how well we "do" Stage 4: Perspective that leads to:
Stage 5 Balance: Try and find that balance between learning and living. Understanding that you can not know it all, and begin to understand that you can rely on your network to learn and store knowledge for you. A sense of calm begins as you understand that you can learn when you need to learn and you do not need to know it all right now.
Are we in need of a Bill of Rights for PLN participants to help relieve some guilt and stress for the occasional need for a break or severe deceleration? Flesh out Jeff's Stage 5 a little. Here's a first stab at it...
Personal Network Member Bill of Rights and Responsibilities
- I have the right not to be social 24/7 - either online or in person.
- I have the right to time for reflection and responsibility for doing so.
- I have the right to use only the tools that suit my learning style.
- I have the right to stop using a tool when it is no longer useful.
- I have the right to not be on the cutting edge all the time or feel I need to always know all there is to know.
- I have the right to choose those with whom I learn in my personal learning network and responsibility to learn from those with whom I don't always agree.
- I have the right and responsibility to disagree and the responsibility to do it professionally.
- I have the responsibility to become familiar with a tool before sharing it with others.
- I have the responsibility to share my knowledge with others in my network.
- I have the right and responsibility to not let online activities keep me from my friends, my family, my workplace, or my community.
That's it. No more beating myself up for punching that "Mark All as Read" button!
Add your rights and responsibilities of PLN members...